A convicted serial burglar blamed for stealing from dozens of North Texas businesses has been sentenced to 49 years in prison.
Prosecutors in Fort Worth on Wednesday announced the penalty for 36-year-old Rodney James Ricketts.
A Tarrant County jury on Tuesday convicted Ricketts of aggregate theft of between $20,000 and $100,000 and ordered him to prison.
Records show Ricketts served time in North Carolina following a 2000 crime spree in which at least 20 businesses were burglarized. He later had felony drug and burglary convictions in the Houston area.
Investigators say Ricketts in 2011 committed burglaries in Tarrant, Collin, Dallas and Denton counties mainly at Subway sandwich stores and pizza chains. Losses totaled more than $76,000.
He was captured in October 2011 during an attempted burglary in Bedford. Officials said a Subway store owner who, after being burglarized three times, installed armor plating and a backup cellular alarm at a store that had not yet been burglarized.
"Those steps proved to be the burglar's downfall," officials said in a news release.
Officials later recovered hard drives, laptops, bank bags, surveillance systems and deposit receipts from the various businesses that had been burglarized.
Prosecutors said Ricketts burglarzied dozens of North Texas businesses between Jan. and Oct. 2011.